The Maryland men's and women's lacrosse teams lead the way for local schools in Inside Lacrosse's 2017 Face-Off Yearbook rankings. The Terps men, the national runner-up each of the past two seasons, are No. 3 overall, behind Denver and defending NCAA champion North Carolina. Loyola Maryland is No. 5, followed by No. 9 Navy, No. 11 Towson and No. 12 Johns Hopkins. The North Carolina women, who defeated Maryland in the Division I final, are the preseason No. 1 team, while the Terps are rated second. The No. 18 Blue Jays, No.19 Tigers and No. 20 Greyhounds round out the top 20.
Freshmen O'Neill, Simpson garner All-America honors
Towson freshman kicker Aidan O'Neill and freshman returner Shane Simpson were named HERO Sports Football Championship Subdivision first-team Freshman All-Americans on Tuesday. The Tigers are one of four schools to have two players named to the first team. O'Neill hit 18 of 22 field-goal attempts and 25 of 25 extra-point attempts. The 18 field goals set a Tigers single-season record. Simpson, the Colonial Athletic Association Freshman of the Year, first-team All-CAA kickoff returner and STATS third-team All-America kick returner, averaged 26.9 yards on 34 kickoff returns. He tied an FCS record when he returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown against New Hampshire.
Playoff-bound Giants plan to play starters vs. Redskins
Having locked up the fifth seed in the NFC playoff field, the New York Giants can't help their postseason fortunes with a victory in Sunday's regular-season finale against the Washington Redskins. Nonetheless, first-year Giants coach Ben McAdoo said he plans to play his starters in a game that means everything to the host Redskins. "The starters are gonna play," McAdoo said, speaking to Washington reporters in a conference call. "I don't know any other way to do it." Asked how long the Giants starters likely would play, McAdoo said: "They're gonna play the game." Asked for his rationale, particularly given the calamitous Week 16 injuries to Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr, Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota and Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett, McAdoo said: "We're looking to build a physical, heavy-handed, tough road team." The defending NFC East champion Redskins (8-6-1) need a victory over the Giants (10-5) and any result other than a tie in Sunday night's game between the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions to clinch the sixth and final wild-card playoff spot.
—Liz Clarke, The Washington Post
Son of former Navy hoops great Butler leaves program
It was a feel-good story when James Butler committed to play basketball at Navy in November 2015. He's the son of one of Navy's all-time greatest players. But James Butler has decided not to follow in the footsteps of his father, Vernon, after all, leaving the program recently, due largely to a lack of playing time. The 6-foot-8, 230-pound freshman forward appeared in just four games and logged 25 total minutes. "James told me he didn't feel like he was in the rotation right now and he wanted to step away," coach Ed DeChellis said. "I don't know if he's going to stay at the academy or move on to another school." Butler was named first-team All-Metro by The Washington Post after leading the area in scoring with 27.5 points per game as a senior at Lake Braddock (Va.). Vernon Butler ranks second in Navy basketball history in scoring (1,952) and rebounding (1,115), behind legendary former teammate David Robinson. The two helped lead Navy to the Elite Eight of the 1986 NCAA tournament.
—Bill Wagner, Baltimore Sun Media Group
More men's college basketball: Chris Clarke had 22 points and 12 rebounds, leading host Virginia Tech to an 87-70 victory over UMBC. Seth Allen (Maryland) chipped in 17 points for the Hokies (11-1). The Retrievers (9-4) held on early before ice-cold shooting left them down 40-27 at halftime. Jairus Lyles had 21 points in the loss. UMBC shot just 36 percent overall, compared with 49 percent for Virginia Tech.
Women's college basketball: Lauren Moses scored 15 points to lead host Virginia (10-2) to a 56-30 victory over UMBC (3-8) at their Cavalier Classic. Tyler Moore had eight points to lead the Retrievers. Virginia, which led 17-8 after the first quarter, shot 40.4 percent from the field; UMBC finished at 22.2 percent for the game. … Vanessa Neal scored 18 points, but visiting Coppin State (0-11) lost, 90-55, to North Carolina (10-2). The Eagles went on a 10-0 run in the second half but couldn't catch up to the Tar Heels. Destinee Walker had a game-high 21 points for North Carolina.